By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Re Dan Savage's blowjob lover HACB [Savage Love, March 28April 3]: Blaming a guy for not coming during a blowjob is like blaming the passenger for a train that won't move. Gimme a break! Just 'cause "Peter" was a quick dick doesn't mean you were the master blowjobber that you think. I've dated tons of women, who all sucked my cock, and maybe one out of 15 made me release. Men don't stop themselves from coming while being blown. Ever!
FIELD OF SCHEMES
Neil deMause's 'Take Me Out to the Mall Game' [March 28April 3] was a home run. It reminds me of why taxpayers should just say no to using public funds for any new major sports stadiums. In ancient Rome, government attempted to curry favor with the masses by offering free bread and circuses. Today, we have sports pork. How sad that New Yorkers are continually asked to pay for stadiums. Public dollars are being used as corporate welfare to subsidize a private-sector business. The only real beneficiaries of these expenditures are team owners and their multimillion-dollar players. It's hard to believe that the Yankees and Mets owners can't finance their new stadiums by themselves, between selling the stadium name; season skyboxes and reserve seating; cable, television and radio revenues; concession refreshment; and souvenir sales, along with rental income from other sports, rock concerts, and other commercial events.
Great Neck, New York
Re Jeneen Interlandi's 'TB or Not TB'[April 410]: I am a retired RN, and these foreign nurses are clearly not thinking about their responsibility to their patients. I remember the days when we had mandatory X-rays and skin tests (as a condition of employment). What changed? There has been too much pseudo concern for individual rights, without any concern about the impact of their actions on others. It is time for hospitals (and other health care employers) to be held responsible to protect their patients from careless employees.
I was disappointed by Interlandi's condescending tone toward the nurses. They are portrayed as uneducated and selfish, and harshly criticized for not taking the INH [Isoniazid] treatment. In reality, they are educated medical professionals who may have several reasons behind their decision: WHO estimates that 50 million people are infected with multidrug-resistant TB, and INH-resistant TB strains are common. If infected with an INH-resistant latent TB strain, the individual taking the treatment will only increase the antibiotic resistance, making the potentially active strain worse. INH does have health side effects and, as there is no way to test if latent infection is cleared or not, the six- to nine-month regimen may be in vain. Also, health care providers often refuse the INH treatment because of the high risk of re-exposure due to the nature of the job. Interlandi's article encourages readers to blame the nurses instead of focusing on the issue at hand: TB is a global health crisis disproportionately affecting underserved communities. Resources exist to eradicate this disease, but until they are appropriately directed, TB will continue to threaten all of us.
San Francisco, California
SCENE OF THE GRIME
Nathan Lee's review of Los Muertos['Got Your Goat,' April 410] is brilliant, crisply blending summary with analysis. It sifts the film's effort to probe instinctive violence as the ambiguous source both of natural experience and cultural development. Still, there exists here a logical flaw that is as heart-wrenching and appalling as Alonso's vision. Considering the film's scene of live animal slaughter, Lee writes: "I've come to find this no more objectionable than the killing of a rabbit in The Rules of the Game, being just as essential to the film's integrity and effect." Why, we must ask, is that "integrity and effect" necessarily realized by actual animal sacrifice? We would never say the same had actual humans been killed in order to somehow legitimize the protagonist's gestures. Surely, if the film's violence is meant to "epitomiz[e] the process of cultural evolution, whereby human sacrifice was displaced first onto animals and then into representation," then consistency demands on-film slaughtering of actual humans to precede on-film slaughtering of their animal displacements. But, of course, we wouldn't countenance that logic. I submit that we ought to instead sustain logic by asking the filmmaker, armed with the many technologies of his medium, to "represent" animal slaughter without recourse to killing an actual living being, sustaining his craft's relation to representation in a way that doesn't implicate himand his savvy, if too reverent (re)viewersin the continuing barbarities of human cultural practice.
Re Nat Hentoff's 'Joe Frederick, First Amendment Idol' [April 410]: It defies logic that this case ever managed to get to an appellate court, never mind the Supreme Court. And why did the Supreme Court even take this case? Everything I know about this case, I learned from Hentoff's column, and based on that, this is simply stupid. While Hentoff may understand why Kenneth Starr would take such a case, I don't understand why the ACLU would take up the case of a snot-nosed kid looking for publicity in an attempt to manufacture an important First Amendment case. Principal Deborah Morse was clearly over-the-top in trashing the banner and suspending the student for five days. Then, in what sounds like a fit of pique, she doubled the kid's suspension when he had the temerity to defend his action in lofting the banner. Well, it is clear that this is not an important First Amendment case; it is the absurd and expensive limelighting of a dedicated educator and an incompetent school board in Juneau, Alaska. And it is a disgrace that the Supreme Court chose to hear it.
Why would you let a die-hard Yankees fan write an article about a Mets star? In 'Stealing Mickey's Mantle' [March 28April 3], Allen Barra pretty much skewed everything to make José Reyes look bad. He compared Reyes's whole career to Jeter's. The problem is that Reyes's first three years in the big leagues were bad because of injuries and the fact that he had a lot to learn. Last year he really developed, and his stats at the age of 22 blew away Jeter's stats at the same age. Barra also said that Reyes and Jeter are exactly the same as base runners. How ridiculous is that? Reyes led all of baseball in stolen bases last year. I don't see myself continuing to read your paper if you are going to allow people with agendas to write the articles.
Bedford Hills, New York